Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Presidential Character, The: Predicting Performance in the White House 4th Edition

3.7 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0205652594
ISBN-10: 020565259X
Why is ISBN important?
ISBN
This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. The 13-digit and 10-digit formats both work.
Scan an ISBN with your phone
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Trade in your item
Get a $6.51
Gift Card.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Buy used On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
$36.21 On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
Buy new On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
$59.26 On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
More Buying Choices
28 New from $42.52 28 Used from $19.07
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Prime Student Free%20Two-Day%20Shipping%20for%20College%20Students%20with%20Amazon%20Student


The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
$59.26 FREE Shipping. In stock but may require an extra 1-2 days to process. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Presidential Character, The: Predicting Performance in the White House
  • +
  • The Presidential Difference: Leadership Style from FDR to Barack Obama, Third Edition
Total price: $85.57
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Incorporating U.S. presidents from Taft to Bush, this volume uses research-based political psychology, history, and biography to provide a means of determining the performance of candidates as president. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Back Cover

The Presidential Character: Predicting Performance in the White House, Fourth Edition
James David Barber


LONGMAN CLASSICS IN POLITICAL SCIENCE

In revising classic works in political science, Longman celebrates the contributions its authors and their research have made to the discipline. The Longman Classics in Political Science series honors these authors and their work. Providing students with an updated context, each title in the series includes a new foreword, written by one of today’s top scholars, offering a fresh, in-depth analysis of the book and its enduring contributions.


What should we look for in a president?

This timeless question begs reconsideration in light of today’s crucial presidential election season. To that end, The Presidential Character, James David Barber’s well-known, provocative examination of who has the potential to be voted into the highest office in the land–and why–is being reissued as the newest addition to the Longman Classics in Political Science series.

Arguing that patterns in a person’s character, world view, and political style can allow us to anticipate his or her performance as president, this classic text offers explanations and predictions of the performance of past presidents and presidential candidates.

Features

  • Presents a new foreword by presidential scholar George C. Edwards III, Distinguished Professor of Political Science at Texas A&M University, that highlights the book’s classic and enduring contributions.
  • Includes predictions of presidential performance published before Presidents Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, and Bush ever served.
  • Analyzes the media’s role in providing information about the political candidates and in shaping public opinion of them.
  • Draws on historical, biographical, and psychological research to help voters make judicious choices in determining the country’s highest leaders.
  • Encourages citizens to be actively involved scholars, critics, and participants in their government.

Visit us at www.pearsonhighered.com

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 4 edition (July 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 020565259X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0205652594
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #115,073 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is an incredibly fascinating book for those interested in the history of the American Presidency and particularly of the occupants of that office. Mr. Barber analyzes the presidents by two main factors: activity (how much effort a particular president put into performing his job) and the president's personality type and world-view (whether a president viewed his role in the world in a positive or negative light). From this Mr. Barber theorizes that there are four major presidential types: active-positive, active-negative, passive-positive, and passive-negative. By analyzing an individual's personality prior to his entry into the White House, Mr. Barber suggests that one can predict his performance while in the presidency. For example, he categorizes FDR, JFK, and Truman as active-positives (high activity while president with each having a positive view of the world), Taft, Harding and Reagan as passive-positives (low effort put into performance of their duties, while trying to show a positive, if timorous, face to the world), and Coolidge and Ike as passive-negatives (each viewing his role in the presidency as a duty to perform rather than something in which to look forward).
The best parts of the book are in which Mr. Barber talks about the active-negative presidents, all of whom have proved disastrous to the office. Each of these presidents had put much effort and personal investment into the performance of his duties, but without any enjoyment. For each of these men, life has always been a struggle and the personal rewards few. Compulsiveness and anxiety was each man's life-script. None of them could ever afford to rest on his laurels after some success, because if he did so, he would only have to re-double his efforts next time for fear of committing failure.
Read more ›
Comment 34 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Barber's treatise was seminal and has been quite well-received. It is well-written and interesting. However, the psychology is archaic. Barber postulates two dimensions of presidential personality: Activity and positive vs. negative orientation. This is an arbitrary and very incomplete perspective on personality - which incidentally, has been studied very extensively in psychology over the past 50 years or so. The assessment of a given president's standing on each trait is entirely Barber's, not the result of any formal attempt at measurement or a consensus of experts. In sum, this is an armchair psychological analysis, with virtually no connection to other attempts to understand personality or its relationship to leadership.
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Barber is a man on a mission, albeit a mission that is of little relevance. He is attempting to devise a system that can be used to predict the performance of American Presidents, as well as, Presidential Candidates. Barber's view would appear to be that political scientists should devise a system that will prevent bad men from being elected President. Thus, America can be saved all the problems associated with poorly performing individuals. (I am almost tempted to question whether this would include Republicans from Barber's perspective, but I will not.) He believes that this can be done looking at the way the grew up and their outlook towards work. The main problem with this is that you cannot predict from a distance what people will do. You can also argue about where each candidate should actually be located on this scheme. Otherwise, a nice bit of political science.
2 Comments 5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Purchased this book for my husband and he is thoroughly enjoying the information and insights it provides. It's well written and very interesting reading.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Presidential Character, The: Predicting Performance in the White House
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Presidential Character, The: Predicting Performance in the White House